Rise of Riverdale!
- By Adam Tyler Hughes
- Photo Courtesy of CW Network
A death. A beautiful new girl. And a certain redhead became a hottie over the summer. The town of Riverdale is filled with mystery and exceptionally pretty faces. Helmed by the one and only Greg Berlanti, this upcoming teen drama is slated to join the CW midseason roster. If you’re looking for your newest guilty pleasure, mark your calendars, because Riverdale is going to blow you out of the water.
Riverdale has been called a cross between Twin Peaks and the CW hit Gossip Girl. It is a subversive adaption of the widely popular and long-running Archie comic book series. Yes, that means the certain redhead who got hot over the summer is, in fact, Archie Andrews (KJ Apa, Shortland Street) himself. But the drama doesn’t start there. Veronica Lodge (newcomer Camila Mendes) is our new girl in town, and while she has some family drama packed away, she is looking to make a fresh start. And what’s with the mystery surrounding the Blossom twins? Thank goodness we have Jughead Jones (Cole Sprouse, The Suite Life of Zack and Cody) to narrate the tale. If you think all that sounds fun, understand that it doesn’t stop there. Betty Cooper (Lili Reinhart, Surviving Jack), Kevin Keller (newcomer Casey Cott), and that snake of a guy, Reggie Mantle (Ross Butler, Teen Beach 2) also join the roster of classic Archie characters that propel the drama of Riverdale.
So what makes Riverdale something you absolutely have to watch? If you’re not yet onboard, let’s look at the people behind it. The pilot was written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the chief creative officer of Archie Comics, also known for his writing for Marvel. He serves as executive producer along with the aforementioned powerhouse, Greg Berlanti himself. Berlanti is known as the force behind numerous shows on the CW, including Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, and more recently, Supergirl. If anyone knows what he’s doing, it’s this guy. If his CW track record isn’t enough, consider that he also produces the popular NBC crime thriller, Blindspot. Have I convinced you yet?
No? Let’s consider what makes Riverdale different than its teen drama predecessors. While most shows nowadays hang on the thread of mystery as a draw into their narratives, Riverdale subtle movement lets every character’s mystery build at an organic pace. The dark teen drama knows its world lives in the shadows and brightens the lights ever so slowly. Not to mention the history everyone seems to have with one another. Whose mom dated whose dad? What really happened to Betty’s older sister? Also, is Betty okay? There are so many questions to be answered. But I think the biggest question is what really happened to Cheryl Blossom’s (Madelaine Petsch, The Curse of Sleeping Beauty) twin brother that morning on the river.
If you’re still on the fence, there’s this: the CW Network has just announced that Molly Ringwald (The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, and like every other iconic coming of age movie from the 80’s) has been cast as Archie’s mother, Mary. And, Luke Perry (the infamous Dylan McKay from Beverly Hills, 90210) plays Archie’s father! Could it get any better than that?! I think not. But wait, there’s more! In addition to that power couple, the ever adored Shannon Purser (Barb from Stranger Things) will play Ethel Muggs, so we can stave off our #JusticeForBarb needs by watching her here.
Okay, I’ll stop gushing about all the reasons you should watch this show. It’s not my fault I grew up on the Archie comics. Well, maybe it is. In the meanwhile, I’ll have you know I’m reading the revamped series as we speak. If you are at all a fan of Archie, Betty, and the Riverdale crew that’s brought us story after story for decades, this show is for you. If you are a fan of Gossip Girl, 90210, or even Pretty Little Liars, you’re going to love Riverdale. There’s nothing stopping you from becoming a fan of Archie and his friends. All you have to do park it on your couch, click the remote power button, and sit back, because Riverdale is coming, and it’s going to be epic.
“Riverdale” premieres on January 26th on the CW Network.